July 12th, Monday
Got a note from Leonard to say old Veasey had died last night. They are in a dreadful state of it as I don’t think anyone but Leonard realized how serious it was. He asked if we would have the children so after breakfast we went over and fetched them. The funeral was this afternoon, everything has to be done in such a hurry in this country and why I cannot imagine as its not like India. The children were so good but oh! I shouldn’t care to have sole charge of any kids out here.
The tractor and drill came over here today. Pink went to the funeral yesterday and said it was dreadful, everywhere a sea of mud and the car taking the coffin got stuck so they had to unload it, all so crude but luckily neither Mrs V or Dorothy were there. We are occupied with a toto who is apparently dying of appendicitis. When the Dr was over at Leonard’s he came on here and said there was nothing to be done, and though the child revived somewhat yesterday he was bad again today.
Started wheat sowing early but at about 9.30 the tractor refused to move and Pink found that the neopara had filled every available tank with water! They spent hours running it off by which time torrents were descending and they got little done.
All day long we are in the clouds, so unusual. It is entirely sunless with perpetual fine and very wetting rain and one is continually changing for one cannot stop work. Wheat and coffee in full swing, the tractor going all day. Nootie sits upon the drill and Pink drives, H and Babs are pruning coffee all day, and I and my mad toto combat the garden.
Lower shamba getting on splendidly, and all the time the upper is being prepared. A busy time. My toto today regaled me with stories about his Reserve, where apparently lions, snakes, buffaloes, elephants and leopards wander in masses. He is a Wageeshu and told me his father got ill and died by medicine brought from the woods. I expect a good many are polished off by their witch doctors. One of our squatters daughters has just been done to death by her father cutting a hole in her side as is their practice.
Pink returned this morning. He stuck in a hole, went to the Boltons from oxen but failed to get any, went to de la Harpe’s where he slept and was dragged out this morning. Bridges are broken on account of waggons going over them and the roads I believe are impassable. What a season!
July 20th, Tuesday
Great consternation today among the boys as the father of the girl who died the other day died himself today and his wife about 2 days ago. They all think its a “shauri ya Satani” and there is much wailing and gnashing going on, but to me his illness and in fact all three primarily looks like flu. They were too frightened to go and bury him by themselves so Pink had to take them down there in the car.
We are much thrilled to find that some of the logans, currants etc from Laxton are alive, a great joy.